Updated: May 14, 2021
Staying organized with a planner is a great way to ensure that your tasks get completed promptly. Planners are also great tools to keep your entire family in the loop and on track with the things that absolutely have to get done. So, how can you get the most out of this essential organizational tool?
1. Place Your Planner In A Place You Look Often
Your planner will be the most useful if it is in a place that everyone in your home can see easily and often. Place your planner in a high traffic area where it is seen a lot.
2. Place The Planner In An Easily Accessible Area
Make sure that your planner is in an area where it can be used. You will need to actively engage with your planner to get the most out of it so placing it in an area that can be easily accessed will help.
3. Check Your Planner First Thing In The Morning
Checking your planner right away in the morning will allow you to mentally prepare for your day. You won’t be surprised by anything on the schedule. Checking it right away will ensure that you are ready for a successful day.
4. Check Your Planner Before You Go To Bed
Looking at your planner each night before bed is a good way to make sure that everything that was planned for that day is finished. Making sure that you have checked off every item on your list will result in a better night’s sleep so you can wake up and do it all again.
5. Take A Photo Of It So You Can Take It With You Wherever You Go
Having a photo of your planner on your phone is a good way to make sure that you remember your to do list on the go. Having a picture easily accessible will make it easy to get everything done.
6. Pre-Plan Each Week Every Sunday Evening
Having a set planning time each week where you can sit down and plan the week as a family is important. This will make sure that you have a clear idea of the week ahead and that everyone in the family can have input on the planner.
7. Add Your Own Checkboxes When Things Are Finished
Adding checkboxes to your planner will give you a sense of accomplishment with each completed task. As you get things done, you will get the satisfaction of checking off each box.
8. Color Code Activities
Assigning each of your activities to a certain color is a great way to visually organize your planner if you have events that repeat. This can help you visualize your week and what activities are repeated.
9. Color Code People
If you have multiple people using the planner, color coding activities by the person is a great way to keep everyone organized. Everyone will know to look for their color and can focus on those tasks.
10. Use Thin Tape To Mark Off Multiple Days
If you have events that last multiple days, marking those days with a continuous piece of thin tape will save room while still reminding you about that event.
11. Add Sticky Notes On Busy Days For Added Space
If you have a really busy day and need more space on the planner, add a sticky note to the top. This will double your space and you can remove it when you are finished.
12. Use Symbols And Special Shapes To Represent Important Event
Symbols and special shapes are a great way to denote important events on your planner. Keep track of anniversaries and other special days with a small star or triangle shape. It will highlight the event and make it stand out.
13. Use Shorthand To Represent Recurring Events
If you have events that occur at the same time each week, use an abbreviated system to mark these on your planner. This will save space while still alerting you to a task that needs to be completed.
14. Divide Days Into Sections For Each Person
Dividing each day of your planner into sections is a great way to give every member of your family their own space. This will keep everyone organized and you can easily compare schedules.
15. List To-Do’s Chronologically
Listing the tasks that you need to complete by when you need to do them is a great way to organize your planner. This is a great method if you have a lot of appointments or activities that are at a set time.
16. List To-Do's By Importance
If your to-do list is not tied to set times, consider laying things out by importance or priority. Put your most important tasks first and go down the list by descending importance. This will ensure that you get the most important things done first while leaving fewer important things for your free time.
17. Leave Space For Last-Minute Things
You should designate a space on each day of your planner for last-minute things. This will allow you to keep your schedule flexible so that you can accommodate certain needs. A small space at the end of each day can keep everything organized and on track.
18. Use Your Planner To Reflect On Each Month’s Productivity
At the end of each month, reflect on your planner. See all of the things that you got done before preparing for the next month. Ask yourself, “what needs to be changed so I can be more productive?” Doing this each month will improve your experience with the planner.
19. Take Photos Of Each Month For Your Records
Taking a picture of your planner at the end of each month is a great way to save your schedule in your files. You never know when you may need to go back and check the things you did on a certain day.
20. Celebrate Your Open Spaces
We are all so busy all of the time. When you have open space on your planner, celebrate it. Enjoying free time can lower your stress levels and improve your overall mood. Taking time off can actually boost your productivity. Taking time to enjoy blank spaces on your planner will help you get the most out of it.